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LAS VEGAS – The consumer electronics industry is projected to post a healthy 6.1% increase in revenues in 2008, according to the Consumer Electronics Association.  Overall shipment revenues are forecast to top $171 billion this year.

“CE industry sales have exceeded our expectations once again, despite a challenging domestic economic situation,” said CEA president Gary Shapiro. “It’s clear that the spirit of innovation will continue to sustain and grow our industry.”

CEA says 2007 revenues totaled $161 billion, up 8.2% year-over-year.

2008’s growth is in line with the historical industry average and is well above expected growth levels for many other sectors, including housing and new vehicles, CEA says.

TV displays continue to drive consumer electronics, representing roughly 16% of overall shipment dollars. Shipments of displays are expected to grow 13% to more than $29 billion. Sales of next-generation DVD players will take off in 2008, as prices decline and consumers continue to seek out high quality home theater products. CEA forecasts unit shipments will grow 173% to 2.8 million.

“Consumers remain focused on upgrading their home theater systems,” noted Steve Koenig, CEA’s senior manager of industry analysis. “Already, digital TVs are present in more than 50% of U.S. households. 2008 will continue to feature robust growth in this category.”

Fueled by the availability of three next-generation consoles, gaming hardware alone is estimated to have grown 50% to $6.6 billion in 2007. Riding the wave of several successful title launches, gaming software is expected to drive growth in 2008. CEA expects software sales to grow 26% to $11.5 billion this year.

Total shipment revenues in the mobile video and navigation category will nearly double this year to more than $3.1 billion thanks to skyrocketing sales of PNDs. In particular, CEA expects rapid revenue growth of more than 74% for devices that include traffic and data functionality.

TAIPEI Hon Hai Precision Industry, the parent company of Foxconn Electronics, reported 2007 revenues rose 42.5% year-over-year, hitting a record $38 billion. Read more ...
PENANG, MALAYSIA - Plexus earned more than $350 million in revenue from its Penang operations in fiscal year 2007, some 23% of the EMS firm's $1.5 billion revenue for the year. And the site is front and center at the company's strategy to double in size over the next few years.

“We aim in the next four to five years to double our revenue to $3 billion, and anticipate a growth rate of 15% to 18% (during that period),” CEO Dean Foate said in a press conference.

Foate said Plexus has invested $79 million in its Penang operations over the past six years, according to a published report in the The Star Online. The site includes three plants and its new Asia Technology Center.

LOHJA, FINLAND – Electronics manufacturing OEM Photonium Oy purchased a 55% stake in Mikkeli, Finland-based Akseli Lahtinen Oy. The companies did not disclose other financial information.

The deal called for Laskentaneliö Ky, Tuomo Honkanen and Rauno Suoniemi to each sell 18% of their holdings to Photonium. Photonium holds an option to purchase the remaining shares within the next three years.

Photonium designs and manufactures lines for optical fiber manufacturing and electronics manufacturing automation.

Akseli Lahtinen designs and manufactures automation products.

ARLINGTON, VA – Electronic component orders bounced back in December after two sub-par months, the Electronic Components Association said today. The trade group forecasts 2008 will see similar results. Read more ...
CARLSBAD, CA – Asymtek and YesTech today announced a jointly developed process for tracking and validating placement and accuracy of dispensed fluid dots.
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NEENAH, WI -- Plexus's executive vice president and chief technology and strategy officer,
J. Robert Kronser, has began a disability leave upon a determination of long-term disability.

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WASHINGTON -- The National Electrical Manufacturers Association named Baker Botts to lobby the federal government, according to a disclosure form.

The firm will lobby on issues relating to the use and handling of hazardous substances in electrical products, according to the form posted online Nov. 29 by the Senate's public records office.

AUSTIN, TX - Electronics manufacturing services provider Bantam Electronics has added engineering design and new product integration services to its offerings.

Bantam said the new services, the result of additions to the company's engineering staff and “expanded partnerships,” provide the majority of resources required for hardware product design, testing, and manufacturing integration, including mechanical and electrical design, component engineering, DFX, test fixture design, prototype design, and prototype assembly facilities.

"We are very excited with the addition of these services," said President and CEO Michael Chaddock in a press release.

Bantam’s customer base includes AMD, Crossroads NetQoS, Cortexa and JBM.


EL SEGUNDO, CA – China’s semiconductor purchases will rise 12% this year to $58 billion after growing 15% last year, according to iSuppli Corp.

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RICHARDSON, TX – EMS provider Trilogy Circuits has registered under the U.S. State Department International Traffic in Arms Regulations.

ITAR regulates the manufacture, export, import and transfer of defense-related articles and services.

“As a provider of mission-critical military electronics design and manufacturing services, we felt it was necessary to take additional steps to safeguard defense related data,” said president Charles Capers.

SANTA ANA, CA – Amplifier maker Powerwave Technologies has sold part of its Hungarian manufacturing operations to Sanmina-SCI. Read more ...

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